Thursday 10 July 2014

Planning News and two Falls from Grace

Time for some updates for a couple of the stories this blog has been following.

Pwll y Trap, Adpar (Newcastle Emlyn)

Ceredigion County Council yesterday rejected an application by a local developer to build 17 homes on a greenfield site in Adpar after local residents put up a strong fight. The development would most likely have been the first part of a larger development on the land, and the developer has indicated that he may appeal.


Anyone watching yesterday's meeting of Carmarthenshire County Council will have seen another side to the normally bluff, bumbling and jovial Council Chair, Daff Davies, as he stamped down and refused to allow Cllr Siân Caiach to speak when she tried to reply to a tirade from Chief Executive, Mark James. Her action was contrary to Rule No.1 of the council's constitution, which is that the Chief Executive must always have the last word.

Fortunately for Cllr Davies, voters in Wales have no right of recall; otherwise he would now certainly be facing a by-election in the local government equivalent of the recent fixture between Brazil and Germany.

Cllr Davies scraped to victory by the narrowest of margins in the 2012 council elections, but has become a pariah for many of his constituents after supporting the controversial Mwche Farm wind turbine application.

There was very strong opposition locally to the plan, which Daff dismissed as the rantings of "newcomers and malcontents". This did not go down at all well with the 422 objectors, 70% of whom were from Carmarthenshire, and nearly all of those from Llansteffan, Llanybri and Laugharne. Judging from the correspondence Cneifiwr has received, some of these newcomers and malcontents have very Welsh names and can write perfect, idiomatic Welsh.

Several formal complaints about the Councillor's conduct have now been sent to the Ombudsman by members of the public, as well as another from Llansteffan and Llanybri Community Council where Daff lost a vote of no confidence. If that were not enough, two separate applications for judicial review are understood to be in the offing.

Newcastle Emlyn

A decision on the controversial Cawdor supermarket planning application was recently deferred for the second time. Although the application was approved by councillors back in 2011, the developer has been unable to comply with the requirements of the Section 106 Agreement which was a condition. It is said to be extremely unusual for a council to allow a Section 106 Agreement to go unsigned for this long (almost three years), and the site owner has been trying to buy his way out.

It is understood that his first offer of a one-off payment of £10,000 was subsequently upped to £15,000, although that is believed to be rather less than half of cost of the works involved in the S106 commitment.


Away from the Alice in Wonderland world of planning to Kidwelly where Labour's baby-faced rising star Ryan Thomas has suffered what may be terminal setback to his political ambitions.

According to the Llanelli Star, Ryan Thomas resigned abruptly from the town council and has been suspended by the Labour Party pending investigations by parties including the Public Services Ombudsman.

Cneifiwr understands that the complaints relate to an unfortunate incident at the recent mayor making ceremony.

Ryan used to write a blog, which now seems to have vanished, but someone with the same name who seems to live in Kidwelly has begun a new creative exercise. The latest offering includes the following quote which apparently comes from Marilyn Monroe:

Imperfection is beauty,
madness is genius,
and it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.

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